Orthopedics: Passing the Torch

Dr. James Berry retires, passing the torch to two new partners.

As 2021 comes to a close, it marks the end of an era for long-time orthopedic surgeon, Dr. James Berry. Dr. Berry is retiring from Firelands Physician Group Sandusky Orthopedics after 39 years at the practice and operating as an orthopedic surgeon. He attended medical school at The Ohio State University and went through residency at Mount Carmel Children’s Hospital of Columbus. Dr. Berry’s specialties include knee and hip replacements.

Dr. Berry didn't always plan on becoming a physician. In fact, his original undergrad degree was in electrical engineering from The Ohio State University. "I loved engineering and planned on going forward in biomedical engineering. However, when I got into medical school, I was naturally drawn to orthopedics as it is probably the most engineering-oriented specialty," Dr. Berry said. “In medical school, I circulated through all the different specialties, and when going through the orthopedics circulation, I liked that it was very physical and hands-on. I like the tools. I like the three-dimensional thinking required.” Dr. Berry was in residency from 1977 through 1982.

When describing his passion for his profession, Dr. Berry mentioned the value of being able to witness the physical transformation he sees his patients go through. “I really enjoy seeing the immediate results for my patients. That’s what I love about the job, especially after performing surgery and repairing a fracture, or placing an implant. Seeing my patients go back to a normal state of living is what I enjoy most.”

Lisa Kehoe, one of Dr. Berry’s patients who was featured in a previous Empower Blog, commented on her experience with him. “My recovery is an example of Dr. Berry’s skill as an orthopedic surgeon,” Lisa stated. “I used to jet ski and snowmobile. That wasn’t even an option for a while. Until now. Dr. Berry and the team at Firelands gave me my life back, and I am forever grateful to all of them.” Lisa’s story is one of the many successes of Dr. Berry’s work.

Dr. Berry will be sorely missed by his colleagues, both in the office setting as well as in the surgery operating room. “We’ve gotten so good that we could potentially perform a straightforward knee or hip surgery without even talking,” Dr. Berry explained. Synergy is a critical element of performing a surgery, and the team at Firelands Regional Medical Center is top notch. Amanda Yetter, director of surgical services said, “We’re really going to miss Dr. Berry. He brought such a positive presence to the room, and everyone worked so well with him.”

Dr. Berry says that Sandusky Orthopedics is in good hands, especially with the addition of two new partners over the past year, Dr. Justin Kelley and Dr. Robert Carlisle. “I have no qualms about turning my patients over to the team,” Dr. Berry mentioned. Recently, Firelands purchased a brand-new surgical robot, called ROSA®, which is meant to assist an orthopedic surgeon performing hip and knee joint procedures. “There are so many new approaches and technologies becoming available in orthopedics,” Dr. Berry went on to say, “and I am glad to see Firelands embrace these advancements to benefit our patients.”

After performing a couple of surgeries alongside Dr. Berry, Dr. Carlisle said, “During the first few weeks of practice, I was in the operating room with Dr. Berry assisting him with his total knees and total hips. It was easy to see how he was able to provide such great care to the community for almost 40 years. He is a fantastic surgeon and even better person.”

Sandusky Orthopedics

Sandusky Orthopedics serves their patients every step of the way. Between the combined specialties of each individual surgeon, they can take care of any patient from head to toe:

“As I approach retirement with mixed feelings,” Dr. Berry said, “I look forward to being able to have the time to do new things. Travel, hobbies. But I'm going to miss it.” Reflecting on his experience at Firelands, Dr. Berry explained, “There's a concerted effort for the whole health system to work as a team. We're all on board to make it the best it can be for everybody: a positive experience with good outcomes. Everybody at Firelands seems to be on board with that.”

Congratulations on your retirement, Dr. Berry! We will miss you at Firelands!

Learn more about Firelands Physician Group Sandusky Orthopedics at firelands.com/ortho.